Fresh, Light Recipes to Welcome Spring

Patient Education Notes

Whether you’re trying to maintain your strength during treatment or follow good nutrition guidelines afterward, eating healthy can be a challenge. Although cancer impacts each of us in different ways, symptoms and side effects such as mouth sores, nausea, and fatigue may make it difficult to prepare or eat healthy meals.

Not only is food a source of the energy and protein needed for the body to heal, certain foods can help alleviate some side effects. For example, the taste and even the smell of lemons can relieve nausea. Soft foods such as soup, applesauce, and cottage cheese can soothe sore mouths. Salmon and olive oil both have anti-inflammatory properties. Knowing the benefits of different foods and learning what tastes good to you at different times can help you stay healthy during and after treatment.

Here are some recipes that are healthy and relatively easy to make. They can also be prepared and saved for later, when you might not feel up to cooking. (Remember to follow the Food Safety Guidelines for Cancer Patients when preparing meals.)

For more recipe ideas and information about nutrition, stop by The Roswell Park Resource Center for Patients & Families, located inside the cafeteria on the first floor of the hospital. If you are having issues that make it difficult for you to eat or drink, talk to your healthcare provider about a referral to one of our clinical registered dietitians (RDs).

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Matzo Balls

(Makes about 20 balls)


½ cup boiling water
1 cup matzo meal
5 tablespoons chicken stock
2 beaten eggs
1 teaspoon salt & 1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon chopped parsley


Pour water over matzo meal and stir until water is absorbed.
Add chicken stock, beaten eggs, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and chopped parsley, and mix.
Put in refrigerator at least one hour.
Shape batter into balls, using about 1 teaspoon of batter for each.
Drop balls into large pot of boiling water, cover, and cook for 30 minutes. (They will double in size.) Add to soup. (Recipe below.)

Matzo Ball Soup


64 ounces low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
3 large carrots, sliced
3 stalks celery, sliced
1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
Black pepper to taste


Bring broth to boil in large pot.
Add carrots and celery. Simmer for 15 minutes.
Add matzo balls to soup (recipe above).
Add dill and black pepper.
Serve hot.

Spinach Salad with Strawberries


3 tablespoons raspberry wine vinegar
3 tablespoons raspberry jam
¼ cup canola oil
8 cups fresh baby spinach (or mixed greens)1 pint strawberries, sliced
3 kiwis, peeled and sliced (Remember that you can always substitute fruits in this recipe with whatever is available or sounds appetizing to you!)
2 teaspoons sesame seeds


Combine vinegar and jam in food processor or blender. Add oil in thin stream, blending well. Set aside.
Toss fresh spinach, strawberries, kiwis, and sesame seeds with vinaigrette.
Serve immediately.
Goes great with grilled or baked salmon.

Lemon Angel Hair


8 ounces angel hair pasta (or thin spaghetti)
½ teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1½ teaspoons grated lemon rind (optional)
1/3 cup chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste


Bring water to a boil and cook pasta for 3-5 minutes.
Drain, and save ¼ cup of cooking water. Set aside.
Add remaining ingredients, including the ¼ cup of cooking water, to the pasta and toss to combine.
Serve hot or chilled.

Note: The recipes for Spinach Salad with Strawberries and Lemon Angel Hair are reprinted from the cookbook Eating Well Through Cancer: Easy Recipes & Tips to Guide You Through Treatment and Cancer Prevention, by Holly Clegg & Gerald Miletello, M.D.

This information is provided by Roswell Park’s Patient Education Department. Questions or comments? Please call 716-845-8784.